Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The end of an era... me hopes!

Alas, I've come to end my thirty some year addiction to colas and sodas in general. For years I would choose a camp in which shout whether I chose Coke or Pepsi, but no more. I will not be shamed into choosing a side only to impress friends. I will no longer support the sugary goodness, hyper-promoted, conglomerate companies of Pepsi-Cola or Coca-Cola Ltd. If you were to ask me how long I've been clean of glucose-fructose carbonated water, I can say with gleeful ephasis.... it was just after lunch today*... and damn, I miss it already.

But, isn't admitting your powerless one of the first steps to recovery?

About a week ago, I read an article in Yahoo! about the ill effects of drinking too much Cola. And again today, another article about drinking too much cola appeared in Yahoo. See, I may have mentioned that I have not had the best luck with my health.

Too much soda (main ingredients sucrose, glucose & caffeine) can cause your potassium levels to lower. Now I happen to know my potassium levels are acceptable, but lower levels of potassium can cause a condition called hypokalaemia which can cause:
  1. decreased muscle strength (and all of my male friends can attest that I'm no that strong to begin with. The only way I'm beating them at hand to hand combat is in Halo).
  2. cramping (check)
  3. palpitations (what?! Sorry, I couldn't hear you over my skipping heartbeat)
  4. nausea (urp...)
In extreme cases, it can cause:
  1. heart trouble
  2. paralysis
I kid you not.

So this was a factor in my decision to stop drink cola and soda in general, plus the fact it's bad for your teeth, high sugar content and it's "Liquid Satan**." Plus, let's look at some numbers.

I consumed on average anywhere from 1-2 600mL bottles of pop a day. So, averaging 900mL a day times 365 days in a year is 328,500mL in a year or 328 litres a year. If ten percent of that is actually sugar, than I've digested 32,850 mL (3,285 litres) of sugar in a year. Measure a cup of sugar and eat that, then imagine doing that some 13,139 more times to equal my sugar intake for a year.

Now cost. If I average 1.5 sodas a day at a dollar a day (round number) times 365 days in a year, I've spent $547.50 Times that by say thirty years and that comes to $16,425. Coka-Cola and Pepsi-Cola should buy me a bare bones Mazda 3. However, I live north of the 60th parallel (look on a map for those of you who don't know) and the average cost of a 600 mL bottle of pop costs 2.00. The cost now is $32, 850 over thirty years. Ahem... Coke and Pepsi-Cola Ltd., I'll take take that Mazda 3 loaded to the nines, thank you very much.

I am pleased to say now I am at week one (as of June 1st, 2009)... and even my co-workers are proud of me and asking me how the cola addiction is going... I tell them I'm still going strong... and taking one day at a time.

*This was the blessed blog, I wrote and rewrote four times. I was going to be pulling out hairs from my head or wires from my computer... see next blog entry.
**This was what writers Rory Freedman & Kim Barnouin call soda in their book, Skinny Bitch. I saw it in their interview, I didn't read their book.